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July 1, 2021

Can I sell products from other brands in my online store?

If you run an online store, chances are you’ve thought about integrating products from other brands into your storefront to cut back on manufacturing costs and cover more niches. It’s a technique that more and more online retailers are using in an attempt to appeal to a wider audience and diversify their collections, but it can be a long and complicated process if you don’t know what you’re doing.

With that in mind, keep reading as I walk you through the ways in which you can go about selling new products in your online store, and how CrossMystore can make the process quick and easy.  

Option 1: Do it yourself

Of course, the most obvious way you can integrate new products into your online store is by designing and manufacturing your own items to sell.

Unlike in the past, you can now expose your products to a much wider audience over the internet, increasing the likelihood that you’ll be able to turn a profit from your handiwork, but this doesn’t negate the fact that it’ll take time and money to create and store new products yourself.

Here are a few things to consider if you want to take the DIY route

First, the benefits. Unlike some other methods of integrating new products into your online store, you’ll have full control over every aspect of design, manufacture, marketing and delivery.

You’ll be able to choose exactly how you want them to be made, stored and shipped out, guaranteeing that the final product will match up to your standards. You’ll ensure that your customers get the quality they expect from you.  

However, while there are clear benefits, there are also a few drawbacks to this method. The biggest one concerns time – it takes a lot of it to design, manufacture, find storage for, advertises, and ship out new products, whereas integrating products from other brands is much quicker by comparison.

Making and storing your own products can also get very expensive and it’s up to you to make sure you can scale production, because if you run out of products or materials, it’s back to square one. 

If you’ve weighed up your options and decided to take the quality guarantee of making your own, here are a few things you should think about when you get started. If you already make your own products then you probably have most of this under control already, but you’ll now have to integrate it on a larger scale.  

  • Make sure you’ve got enough materials. Depending on the size of production, this could entail either popping down to the local craft shop, or creating multiple contracts with large wholesalers. Either way, it’s essential that you have enough materials to keep manufacturing your items, because running out after your customers have ordered will lead to long delays and bad reviews.
  • Calculate your product timeline. As I mentioned earlier, designing and selling your own products will take a lot longer than importing pre-made items from other manufacturers, so it’s important to calculate how much time and effort it will take to make them. This will not only guide how much you’ll charge for them, but also help you give a guideline to your customers as to how long it will take their orders to arrive. Communicating this, as well as shipping and returns policies, on your site is a good way to build trust in your brand. 
  • Work out where you’ll store your products. Once you’ve made your products, you need a place to store them. While this could be your parents’ basement if you’re just starting out, larger brands will likely need dedicated warehouses. Find one that’s reliable, conveniently located and big enough for your needs with room for scaling, or rent more space if you already have one. 
  • Organize shipping. By manufacturing your own products you’ll guarantee that they’re being shipped out the way you want them, but you have to organize this yourself. Plan how much your items will cost to package and send, whether you’ll offer free shipping, and if you’ll use a shipping company or just run to the post office yourself. Remember to factor this into your product pricing!
  • Sort out product marketing. Last but not least, once everything else is ready, you can focus on how you’ll present your new products to your audience. Social media posts to drive traffic to your store, a big banner on your storefront showing them off, or a giveaway online, are a few of many different ways to get your new product into view of your current and future customers. 

Option 2: Work with a manufacturer or wholesaler 

While making your own products will guarantee them turning out exactly how you want them, not everyone has the time or processes available to do that. This is where working with a manufacturer or wholesaler can help.

It essentially means you’re outsourcing your product development, hiring someone else to make it for you. 

This is a great option if you’re unable to produce new products yourself, can’t afford new storage facilities, or don’t have time and want to take advantage of pre-made products right away. 

Here are a few things to consider if you want to wholesale

However, while it’s a great way to rapidly scale your business and flesh out your product collections, there are a few drawbacks as well.

Firstly, you will likely have to invest more heavily upfront, especially if you’re contractually obligated to buy new products in bulk from your new partner, with no guarantee you’ll be able to sell them all and make your money back.

You’ll also have limited say over manufacturing quality control, meaning you can’t guarantee the quality of the items your customers will be receiving.  

If you’ve decided to invest in hiring a wholesaler partner, here are a few things you should consider. 

  • Find the right products. There are many ways you can find new products to sell, be it browsing online for companies with products complementary to your own, searching through sites like Etsy, Instagram or Alibaba, or getting in contact with established manufacturers. Finding the right partner takes time, but the reward of good-quality products will be worth it. 
  • Research potential partners. Once you’ve got a list of potential partners, you should do a bit of background research on them. Look for references from previous partners and do some digging online, and ask for licenses or tax information so that they can prove their legitimacy. 
  • Check over the contract for hidden catches. Once you’re satisfied with a potential partner, make sure you check over your contract and their terms and conditions before you sign. Look for hidden catches, and ask relevant questions such as:
    • What will production and shipping costs be? Are there any hidden fees? How long will manufacturing, fulfilment and shipping take?
    • Are shipping and storage costs included, or do you have to store and ship the items yourself? Will this cost extra? Do you have any say over quality control or packaging?
    • Is there a minimum order quantity or spending amount?
    • What is the contract length, and what are the termination terms? Do you have an option to try them out before settling?
    • What is the communication process? How easy is it to communicate with the warehouse, and how will you update each other on stock levels and fulfilment?
  • Sample their products. The final step you should take is to sample the products they’ll be making for you. Make sure you’re happy with the quality, and then confirm the partnership!

Option 3: Hire a dropshipper

The third and fastest option for getting your hands on new products is called dropshipping, a process which involves buying products from a vendor and listing them in your online store without taking physical responsibility for them.

In this way, you sell the items without having to worry about inventory management or fulfilment costs. 

Dropshipping is a great way to instantly get your hands on new products to integrate into your store since you only have to update your website, not wait for delivery of the items. The vendor will ship items to customers on your behalf, and you’ll be charged as they are sold. 

However, the profit margin will be very small and you’ll have to sell a lot to make a decent profit, a task made harder by the fact that many of the items typically sold through dropshipping are available from many different online sites.

Furthermore, you’ll have no say over packaging and manufacture quality and, since you’ll be the only point of contact for customers, you’ll be the target of bad reviews if an item arrives damaged. 

The process of finding a dropshipper partner is essentially the same as for finding a manufacturer – research potential partners and their reliability, check over their contracts, and sample their products. 

Option 4: Cross-Store Selling

The 3 ways of finding new products above are all very common and have been used for years by online retailers. However, there is now another option, one that cuts all the costs of manufacturing, storage and shipping, while still guaranteeing good quality items.

It will help you grow your online collections and offer a wider range of products to your customers to boost your average order value, all without commitments and hidden fees. This process is called Cross-Store Selling, and CrossMystore will help you get started. 

With CrossMystore, the process couldn’t be easier to get up and running.

Instead of the lengthy and expensive process of making your own products or the hidden traps of wholesaling contracts, you instantly gain access to a wide range of quality products that you can integrate into your store without any commitments.

Simply sign up to our platform in just a couple of minutes and browse our dedicated product directory to find what you need.

Then, it’s a matter of requesting to partner up with the brand owner of the product, and integrating their products into your store with just a couple of clicks. There’s no stock transfer and our platform synchronizes all order and inventory information, cutting out the hassle so you can get on with selling right away

Here are a few things to consider if you want to cross-store selling with CrossMystore

With CrossMyStore, you get all of the benefits of the other forms of product integration, but without the drawbacks. As with the other options, adding new products to your collections is the perfect way to cover more niches, offer your customers a more complete shopping experience, and boost your average order value.

You get to feel the immediate effects of adding in the new products much like you would a dropshipping contract, and your supplier partner will take care of all stock manufacture, storage and shipping expenses so you can just get on with selling.

However, unlike wholesaling or dropshipping, Cross-Store Selling cuts out the uncertainties and contracts. Customers will know which brand has provided the new products, so your partner will want to impress them by providing the best quality items and shipping methods possible.

Our platform is completely commitment-free as well, so if you still don’t like the way they handle their stock and deliveries, you can immediately end the partnership, no questions asked!

Our software will transmit all stock and order information automatically so you don’t have to worry about complicated communication procedures, and you’ll make a commission from every item you sell without any hidden fees. It’s the perfect way to grow your online collections and drive profits, hassle-free. 

As you can see, adding in new products to your online store is a great sales strategy to grow your revenues, and the CrossMystore platform will save you time and money along the way. Sign up today, and start selling more stuff now!

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